Types of snorkel masks available:
-Full face snorkel masks:
This type of mask covers your eyes, nose, and mouth with complete full-face coverage. They are also commonly known as scuba masks or diving masks. Full-face snorkel masks provide complete protection to the eyes and ears while keeping your face dry.
-Nose and mouth mask:
As the name suggests, these masks have nose and mouth protectors as their primary features. Nose and mouth masks are available in two types – one kind of mask comes with full face coverage while the other type does not. The one with full face coverage is a scuba mask or diving mask, while the latter is called a snorkel mask. The snorkel masks are most suitable for recreational activities such as snorkeling. These masks do not provide any eye protection.
-One-way snorkel mask:
This type of mask is said to be suitable for people with only one nostril. These snorkel masks are designed to make the water flow into one eye or nostril, and the other eye or nostril cannot be used at all. The snorkel masks are commonly known as snorkeling masks.
Factors to look at before choosing a snorkel mask:
What will you use your mask for – Snorkeling or Face-down diving? If you use it for snorkeling, then the mask with wide eye lenses and little or no nosepiece might be the best choice for you. But if you will be using it for face-down diving, then a full-face snorkel mask with easy access to a mouthpiece would be the best choice for you.
2. Nose fit
The nose piece of the mask needs to be soft and comfortable enough for your nose. It should also not be too tight that it does not give you a good breathing ability or too loose that water will seep in. The seal between your face and the snorkel mask should be air-tight.
The goggles must have wide vision lenses for easy swimming underwater. It is also good if they have distortion-free lenses. Also, look for a mask with an easy-to-use strap that will not get in the way when snorkeling. The cooling systems should also have a good ventilation system so that your face is not overheating.
The mask must provide you with enough air through the tubing system. You should also be able to comfortably fit your neck and ear into the mask without any discomfort or pain. The lenses should be of high quality to not fog easily, and you can see underwater.
The mask should be comfortable enough for your neck and head. It must also fit nicely on your face with no discomfort. Look for a mask that will not be too heavy to wear, as it will be more comfortable when you are swimming underwater.
6. Ease of breathing
The mask must give good and easy breathing capacity. It should also be easy to adjust the length of the tubing to fit your face comfortably.
The mask should be within your budget range, and you must not compromise on quality or performance just because of the price.
Some Useful Tips:
-When choosing a mask, look for one that is comfortable to wear and does not cause any pain in your neck or ear. If it causes pain, then you will probably not be able to enjoy the swimming session. The straps should also be easy to use and lock firmly in place to not move around during swimming.
-The nose piece should be comfortable to wear. Otherwise, you will not be able to enjoy the session. A good nose piece will have soft and wide material which will not hurt your nostrils. The strap should also be easy to use, or it can get in the way during swimming.
-Full face masks with wide vision lenses are ideal for swimming in bigger bodies of water such as seas and oceans, but they will not suffice if you will be snorkeling in shallow waters. For such a situation, a simple nose/mouth mask will be more suitable. Also, a full face mask is often uncomfortable to wear during a long time underwater. So, it is important to understand where you will use the mask and then pick the correct type for that purpose.
Considering all the above factors, a snorkel mask is an important piece of equipment for face-down diving. It serves as an indispensable part of your diving equipment, so it is very important to buy good quality and effective snorkel mask.